Atlanta Personal Injury Lawyer

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Atlanta Personal Injury Lawyer

Atlanta Personal Injury Attorney

A personal injury occurs whenever one party’s actions cause harm to another party. This could take the form of physical injury and/or economic loss, and the victim has the right to pursue compensation for any damages resulting from another party’s negligence or illegal misconduct.

If you or a loved one is struggling in the aftermath of any such incident, an Atlanta personal injury lawyer is the ideal resource to consult.

Representing Personal Injury Claims in Atlanta, GA

The Tatum Law Firm, PLLC, has more than 20 years of professional experience in personal injury law, and our firm has successfully helped many past clients recover substantial case awards for the injuries inflicted by the negligence and illegal actions of others. If you believe you have grounds to file a personal injury claim in Atlanta, GA, you can rely on our firm to assist you with this claim.

We take a client-focused approach to personal injury counsel, learning as much as we can about a client so we can faithfully address all their unique needs and concerns when it comes to proving liability for their damages. We strive to help every client we represent recover as fully as possible in the shortest time possible, and we are confident in our ability to handle the most complex personal injury cases.

When you choose our firm to represent your case, you will have Atlanta personal injury lawyers readily available to answer questions, address concerns, and provide guidance for each new step in your recovery efforts. You can rely on us to help reach a swift settlement if possible or represent you in the courtroom if necessary. The sooner you connect with us, the more time we will have to develop the most compelling civil claim possible on your behalf.

Proving Liability for a Personal Injury Accident in Atlanta

The first step you must complete in any personal injury case is proving fault for your damages. You will need to identify the party or parties responsible for the harm you suffered and prove exactly how they caused your damages. This typically requires a combination of different types of evidence, and your personal injury lawyer can be invaluable for the help they can provide in building the foundation of your claim.

The evidence you will need to prove fault will depend on the type of personal injury claim you are filing. Many types of cases unfold under the purview of personal injury law in Atlanta, including:

  • Car Accidents: These are some of the most common causes of accidental injuries throughout the state each year, and the state upholds the fault system for resolving car accident cases. This means that whoever is at fault for causing a car accident becomes liable for the resulting damages. Recovery from a car accident usually begins with an auto insurance claim, followed by a personal injury suit against the at-fault driver.
  • Truck Accidents: While less common than passenger vehicle accidents, Atlanta truck accidents tend to result in worse damages. They also raise difficult questions of liability, and the average victim may not know how to prove fault for this type of accident. We can help identify all the parties liable for your damages and help uncover the full scope of the damages you can claim after a commercial truck accident someone else caused.
  • Motorcycle Accidents: The risk of catastrophic injury or death is much greater in a motorcycle accident than in most other vehicle accidents because motorcycles offer no physical protection from a crash. We will help our client explore all their recovery options so they can obtain maximum compensation for the serious damages they likely sustained in a motorcycle accident caused by another driver.
  • Slip and Fall Claims: If you suffer injuries in a slip and fall accident on someone else’s property, you may have grounds to file a personal injury claim under Georgia’s premises liability laws. A property owner is liable for any damages a lawful visitor suffers on their property if such an injury occurs because of their failure to maintain reasonably safe premises.
  • Product Liability Claims: Product manufacturers are responsible for any damages their products cause when those products are defective or unreasonably dangerous through the normal intended use of the product. Our firm can help build a product liability claim, proving that a manufacturer is liable for the harm their defective or dangerous product caused.
  • Workplace Accidents: If you are injured at work, workers’ compensation benefits are likely to be your first option for recovering from the incident. Almost all employers are required to have workers’ compensation insurance in Georgia, but an injured worker could have grounds for further legal recourse depending on the specific cause of their injury.

Ultimately, whenever one party’s actions result in harm of any kind to another party, it can form the basis of a personal injury claim. The Tatum Law Firm, PLLC, has years of professional experience handling all types of complex personal injury cases, and we know how to identify the key areas of concern in your impending case. Once you connect with our firm, we will begin building the foundation of your civil claim.

Success with your claim is likely to require several forms of evidence. For example, if you are filing a personal injury claim in response to a motor vehicle accident, you may need physical evidence from the scene of the crash, testimony from witnesses and others involved in the accident, digital evidence like the other driver’s cell phone records, and footage from nearby traffic cameras.

When a personal injury case involves very technical or complex details, an attorney can consult various expert witnesses to support their client’s case. For example, an accident reconstruction expert can explain exactly how a motor vehicle accident occurred, helping the client identify the driver responsible for their damages. Expert witnesses can also help a plaintiff prove the full extent of their damages resulting from a personal injury.

Comparative Fault in Atlanta Personal Injury Claims

Proving fault can be challenging in some personal injury cases, and a plaintiff must also consider whether they share any liability for the damages cited in their claim. If so, it can diminish their recovery or even prevent them from claiming compensation from any other liable party. Georgia follows the modified comparative fault rule, meaning each liable party in a personal injury case has a fault percentage assigned to indicate their respective levels of liability.

When a plaintiff is found partially liable for their personal injury, their fault percentage is taken from their final case award as a penalty. However, they must be less than 50% at fault; otherwise, they cannot claim compensation from the defendant. For example, 10% fault would mean the plaintiff will lose 10% of the total compensation won from the claim, but 50% fault would mean they are liable for their own damages.

It’s common for defendants to assert comparative fault in personal injury claims in their efforts to avoid liability for the damages they have caused. Your personal injury lawyer may be vital not only for the help they can provide in proving fault for your damages but also in helping you disprove allegations of comparative fault that could negatively impact your total recovery.

Claimable Economic Damages in Your Atlanta Personal Injury Suit

The main objective of any personal injury case is to prove that a defendant is liable for causing the damages cited in the claim and for the plaintiff to recover compensation for those damages. Some claimable damages are more obvious than others, and a plaintiff may have grounds to seek compensation not only for immediate losses resulting from their injury but also for the future economic impact of the incident.

Under the state’s personal injury laws, it is possible for the plaintiff in a personal injury case to seek compensation for:

  • Property Damage: If the loss of property resulted from the defendant’s actions, the plaintiff has the right to seek compensation for repair or replacement costs. For example, if the defendant caused a car accident and their auto insurance does not cover the victim’s total repair costs, any remainder can be cited as economic damages in a personal injury claim.
  • Medical Treatment Costs: Most personal injury cases filed in Atlanta pertain to physical injuries. If a defendant caused physical harm with their actions, they are responsible for all the medical care you need to recover as fully as possible. This includes both immediate medical expenses following your injury as well as future medical costs for rehabilitation and management of your long-term symptoms.
  • Lost Wages: The victim of a personal injury may be unable to work during their recovery. If you cannot work after the injury you suffered, the defendant is liable for all resulting lost income; they are also liable for the value of any vacation time you needed to use in the aftermath of the incident.
  • Lost Future Income: Unfortunately, some personal injuries result in permanent disability. If the defendant in your case caused a permanently disabling injury that prevents you from working in the future, they are liable for the income you will no longer be able to earn until retirement age. Personal injury lawyers can help calculate these projected future losses based on how long you could have continued working.
  • Pain and Suffering: Along with the economic damages the plaintiff suffered, they also have the right to seek compensation for the physical pain, emotional suffering, and psychological trauma the defendant inflicted with their actions.

Economic damages are typically straightforward, but the plaintiff is still likely to require help from a seasoned attorney to accurately calculate the full long-term impact of the injury. Pain and suffering compensation is more subjective, and it can be difficult for the average person to determine an appropriate amount to reflect the severity of their experience.

Georgia law does not place a limit on pain and suffering compensation in most personal injury cases, and an experienced attorney can help their client determine a fair amount to include with their claim. The two most common methods used to calculate pain and suffering compensation are the per diem method and the multiplier method.

The per diem method is most applicable when the plaintiff is expected to make a full recovery in the near future. Their attorney can set an appropriate daily compensation rate and then multiply this amount by the number of days it takes the client to fully recover. For example, a daily pain and suffering rate of $300 and a recovery time of 200 days would result in $60,000 in pain and suffering compensation.

The multiplier method is more commonly used when plaintiffs have suffered life-changing harm. The attorney adds up all the client’s economic damages and then multiplies the total by a factor that represents the severity of their condition, usually one to five. For example, if the plaintiff is seeking $200,000 in economic damages but suffered a permanent disability, their attorney is likely to seek several times this amount in pain and suffering compensation.

Injuries From Illegal Misconduct and Punitive Damages

Most of the personal injuries reported in the Atlanta area are the result of negligence or failure to exercise reasonable care in specific situations. However, some personal injuries result from intentional and illegal actions. Defendants in these cases not only face civil claims for damages from their victims but also criminal penalties from the state.

Punitive damages can be awarded in a civil claim for damages if the judge determines that the defendant’s behavior exceeded the scope of typical negligence. The judge will decide how much the defendant must pay in punitive damages, and the amount paid typically reflects their overall financial situation and the severity of their actions.

If a defendant is charged in criminal court, the judge who handles their sentence could require them to pay restitution to the victim as part of their punishment. The amount paid will depend on the discretion of the judge. Personal injury lawyers can advise you as to how the illegal nature of a defendant’s actions may influence your total compensation.

How to Resolve Your Personal Injury Claim in Atlanta

It’s natural for the plaintiff in a personal injury case to dread courtroom proceedings, but the reality is that most of the personal injury claims filed in Atlanta each year do not go to court. Most cases are resolved through private settlement negotiation. As long as the defendant accepts liability for the personal injury and both parties are willing to compromise, settlement offers a much faster resolution to the case.

During settlement negotiation, the plaintiff and the defendant, along with their respective attorneys, meet privately to discuss terms for resolving the case. The defendant may be willing to part with more compensation than they initially expect in return for a speedier resolution to the case, and the plaintiff may be willing to settle for slightly less than they might win at trial in exchange for expediency in obtaining compensation for their losses.

Unfortunately, settlement is not always possible for every personal injury case, and settlement negotiations may fail in many ways. If you are unable to settle your personal injury case privately, your attorney will need to take the case to court. Litigation can be time-consuming and expensive, and the final result rests in the hands of the court. Having an experienced attorney on your side will be essential for reaching a suitable outcome.

What to Expect From Your Atlanta Personal Injury Lawyer

The Tatum Law Firm, PLLC, approaches every personal injury claim we accept with the goal of helping our clients recover the maximum compensation possible for their damages. Every case is unique, so we take time to develop an individualized legal strategy for each client we represent, taking time to address the client’s unique concerns. Our goal is to streamline your case proceedings, shortening the time it takes for you to recover your losses.

We typically aim to settle personal injury cases for our clients efficiently, but we have the experience necessary to represent you in litigation if this becomes necessary. We have years of experience handling all types of personal injury cases that we are prepared to leverage on your behalf, and we have a solid record of success behind us to prove our commitment to helping every client recover as fully as possible.

You have a time limit for filing your personal injury case in Atlanta. The typical statute of limitations for a personal injury claim in the state is two years from the date your injury occurred. While this may sound like more than enough time to file your case, it can take longer than you might expect to gather the foundational elements of your claim. It is always advisable to reach out to a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible to ensure you meet this deadline.

Atlanta Injury Law FAQs

Q: Do You Have to Pay Taxes on a Personal Injury Settlement in Atlanta, GA?

A: No. A personal injury settlement is not taxable at the state or federal level because it does not technically qualify as income. Personal injury settlements are awarded to repay losses, so you do not have to pay income taxes on your settlement. However, if you are awarded punitive damages from the judge handling your case, a portion of the case award may be subject to taxation. Your Atlanta personal injury attorney can refer you to a tax professional for any such issues.

Q: How Much Is My Personal Injury Claim Worth in Atlanta?

A: If you succeed with your personal injury claim in Atlanta, you may be able to recover compensation for any economic losses you suffered because of the defendant’s actions. These are likely to include property damage, medical expenses, and lost income, and you also have the right to hold them accountable for projected future losses. Additionally, you can claim as much pain and suffering compensation as you deem appropriate in most personal injury cases.

Q: How Are Pain and Suffering Calculated in Atlanta Personal Injury Cases?

A: Georgia law does not place a limit on pain and suffering compensation in personal injury claims, with the single exception of medical malpractice cases. As long as your case falls outside the purview of medical malpractice in Atlanta, you can claim as much as you believe to be reasonable to reflect the severity of the physical pain and psychological distress you suffered from the defendant’s actions and the time it will take for you to recover as much as possible.

Q: Will I Win a Larger Settlement if I Hire an Atlanta Personal Injury Lawyer?

A: An experienced Atlanta personal injury attorney is your most valuable asset when it comes to maximizing your claim payout. They may uncover channels of compensation you did not realize were available to you, and they can also streamline your case proceedings to shorten the time it takes for you to recover your damages. You’re more likely to win your case and more likely to obtain maximum compensation for your damages with their assistance.

How Much Does It Cost to Hire Atlanta Personal Injury Lawyers?

A: The Tatum Law Firm, PLLC, can represent your personal injury claim without adding to your economic concerns in this difficult time. We take these cases on a contingency fee basis, meaning our client only pays a percentage of their final case award as our fee and only after we win their case. There is no fee at all if we are unable to obtain compensation on their behalf, so there is no risk of paying more for legal counsel than you win in compensation for your damages.

Talk to Our Atlanta Personal Injury Attorneys Today

The Tatum Law Firm, PLLC, has helped many clients in the Atlanta area with all types of complex personal injury cases, and we are ready to apply this experience to your impending case. You have a limited time in which to pursue your recovery, so it is vital to connect with legal counsel you can trust as soon as possible. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation and learn how an Atlanta personal injury lawyer can help you recover.

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